The massively popular ASTRO File Manager received an update about a month back that brought with it the opportunity to register for a free cloud backup account. Registration emails are now being sent out for the private beta of the service, so of course it's only right that we take a quick look at whats on offer.
The e-mail you will be receiving contains within it all the necessary account login information, along with a QR code to the new version of the application that has the backup service integrated within. Once you're over the login stage, the first thing that strikes you is that, well nothing looks any different. Which is good, because there's nothing wrong with ASTRO as it is.
When you start to play around with the backup functionality, it hits you immediately just how seemless, and most of all simple, the process of backing up your files is. Along the top of the app there is now a little cloud icon nestled among the options carousel. Hitting this presents you with an option to view either "Files" or "Trash."
Backing your files up is nothing more than a long press on the relevant icon, and selecting "Backup" from the menu that you are presented with. Backing up multiple files? Press "Multi" first and do your selecting, then press backup. Simple.
To restore files from your cloud locker to your device, is quite literally reversing the process. Select the relevant files, hit "Restore" and hey presto, the files appear back in their original folders on your device.
The biggest disappointment so far? 1GB of storage. Whichever way you look at it, that's poor. When Dropbox give you 2GB out of the gate, and for many Android users Box are handing out 50GB, 1GB just isn't going to cut it. However, we need to remember that this is a beta product, so there is every possibility this may change when it goes public. Until then, we'll just have to wait and see.
Overall, first impressions are good. It's hard to see who would use this over the more established cloud backup services at this stage, but with an install base the size of ASTRO's the seamless integration and simplicity of use could well swing a few.
And one final thing, the application point blank refuses to open on my Galaxy Nexus. So if you're running ICS, you might not be able to play just yet.
Hit the break for more information, and a selection of screenshots. If you fancy registering yourself, hit the download link to get the current Market version and sign up within.
More: ASTRO backup guide